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Ugly Corporate Store Plays Hipster Dress Up - An -Ex-Employee's Tale

  • Apr 8, 2009
  • by
I'm sorry to say that I worked at Urban Outfitters for over a year, working my way up to Cash Wrap Team Lead (that means I rang people up, and was in charge-ish of other people who rang people up). It was a TERRIBLE job.
Urban may retail to funky young things who nonchalantly tie their flannels around their waists, but the company is anything but cool. As an employee, you see the great corporate beast in action constantly. It ain't fun at 3:00am after a "perfect close" (i.e. fold every item in the store perfectly all night long) to have the manager inform you that it's time for a "bag drop." A bag drop entails you dumping out the contents of your purse or bag onto the floor, while a superior rifles through its contents.
My mother was horrified when she came to visit me and I took her to "my store" for a look around. When we left, I was searched by a security guard. This includes emptying your pockets, lifting the bottom cuffs of your pants to prove you have nothing shoved up in them, and having all bags looked through.
I was eventually fired from the first of two stores I worked in by the men's manager for calling out sick (it was my second sick day in 8 months). I doubt he would've fired me had I taken "an interest" in him as he had in me. The store wrote me a letter of recommendation and issued a formal apology.
Anyway, I could go on forever. It's a terrible place to work and to shop (I couldn't tell you how many people brought in items to return that they wore one time, which were already ruined). The quality is obviously bad, and so is the way they treat their staff. I haven't shopped here since I quit my awful job.

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July 09, 2009
This is one of the worst work stories I've ever heard! How humiliating to have them assume you are thief  when you are there try to promote their business!!! That is terrible PR too. It is really sad to hear this because I adore Anthropologie (not so much for their quality, but for their creativity).
April 28, 2009
Ugh, I'm sorry. That sounds terrible! Your story makes them sound kind of like a hipster Walmart, except they're overpriced :/
More Urban Outfitters reviews
Quick Tip by . October 05, 2010
I have seem some really cute items for sale there. They are expensive and the price/value ration is not commensurate. They have a few CUTE things and I'd be willing to buy a FEW of them for the stated price.
review by . February 18, 2010
Urban Outfitters is one of the few companies that has truly been able to perfect the balance of high design and low price.  College students tend to gravitate towards their clothing because they offer accessible fashion and unique pieces while still within the budget of a college student. Whether you have $300 to spend or $50 to spend on winter boots, your need can be met without compromise.  Their online store is also vast and there is something to be said for a site where you can find …
Quick Tip by . July 01, 2010
Heard they were great ,but never have shopped there.
Quick Tip by . June 08, 2010
Expensive but cute!
Quick Tip by . April 07, 2010
Love everything in the store but WAY too expensive for a college girl.
Quick Tip by . March 20, 2010
I like Urban for their cute, cheap handbags and floral dresses. They also have great gag gifts.
Quick Tip by . March 11, 2010
Urban Outfitters is every fashionista's go-to store here at UW-Madison! What's not to love?
review by . September 10, 2009
I'm so disappointed. I ordered a wall print from Urban Outfitters, and it got here last night.  I was looking forward to opening the package, but I was so let down and annoyed when it got here. It's ripped in three places, and it's absolutely filthy.  I mean it has huge big piles and streaks of dust and brown dirt all over it. It also smells mildewy.    It is the print "Migration" and I'm very disappointed in how it could have gotten shipped out to me with three tears …
review by . December 13, 2008
Urban Outfitters
Urban Outfitters is the equivalent of eating at Burger King for me. It feels great while I'm there, cheerfully snacking on my Chicken Fries and Icee, but afterwards I just feel ethically and physically wrong. Here's why:   The GoodOU definitely does certain things right. It does a smart job of interpreting what the kids are into these days and offering these items up faster for consumption, with more variety, than any other retailer.     The BadUnfortunately, their …
Quick Tip by . August 21, 2009
I have a love/hate relationship with Urban Outfitters. So much cool stuff, yet seemingly so pretentious & pricey for what it is.
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Erin ()
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Urban Outfitters, founded in 1970 in Pennsylvania, also includes the retail brand Anthropologie, Free People, and Terrain and Leifsdottir (wholesale Anthropologie). 

In addition to stores across the United States, Urban Outfitters also operates in Canada, the United Kingdom, Sweden, Denmark, Germany, Belgium and Ireland.

Urban Outfitters is know for their  hip and ironic clothing, furniture and home decor. However, they have been criticized a number of times for merchandise they sell and also logos and signs printed on T-shirts they carry.  Products have been know to allege anti-Christianity (Jesus Dress up ornament), anti-Jewish/Israel ("Everyone loves a Jewish girl" shirt surrounded by $$ signs to reconfirm stereotypes, a shirt with a Palestinian child holding an AK47 over the word "Victimized), and pro violence (hand gun shaped ornaments).
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